Mega catch-up

May 14, 2013 at 9:54 am

I have totally gotten out of the habit of blogging. So much going on! I haven’t even been taking too many photos the past week or so. But of course, there are always SOME photos that must be blogged and there is fascinating stuff going on around here which the world must see.

The first thing on my mind this morning is my new niece, Vivi Lee, born yesterday! Here she is with my mom (Grandma Viv) and her big brother Cody.

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Congratulations to my sister Janet and my brother-in-law Bob! I can’t wait to meet her in person in a few weeks. I wish I was there now! My arms are literally aching to hold this baby.

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Send more pictures please!

The next thing on my mind is the fun evening I had Saturday night. I was invited by the Tampa Bay Rays to attend the game versus the San Diego Padres on Saturday and to stay for the Kenny Loggins concert afterwards.

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{Disclosure: I was given free tickets to the game and VIP field passes for the concert in exchange for helping to spread the word about the Rays Summer Concert Series.}

My friend BJ agreed to be my date and we had awesome seats right behind home plate.

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It’s always cool to be at Tropicana Field. I have been there many times for Rays games and for other events (like when I did a bootcamp workout on the field, and when I ran through it during the Women’s Half Marathon), but it never gets old.

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After a few innings we met up with my friend Ali and her boyfriend Mark and moved over to their seats near the outfield.

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We were ready for some ballpark food, and on Ali’s suggestion Bobbi-Jo and I got these awesome turkey carver sandwiches at a kiosk called Carvers.

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There was like a pound of turkey on this thing, and the thick-cut chips were awesome also.

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We had instructions to head down to one of the outfield field entrances during the 9th inning. While we were waiting in the VIP holding pen (feeling very important) we watched the game on a television that was down there and got to see the Rays win the game!

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We felt pretty special to be one of the first few people allowed onto the field after the game.

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We were positioned right in front of the concert stage!

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The Rays have been doing a Summer Concert Series for a few years now, and the concerts are very popular.

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The field filled up behind us and there were tons of people still in the stands for the concert.

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We were so close to Kenny!

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Thank you so much for the VIP treatment, Rays!

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We had a blast singing along with all of Kenny’s 80’s hits like “I’m Alright” (theme song from Caddyshack), “Footloose” (theme song of Footloose, duh), and “Danger Zone” (theme song from Top Gun). He’s the sound track king! 

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I got pretty nostalgic and a little emotional when he sang “Forever”, remembering what it felt like to be 16 years old in 1985. We were surrounded by a few Kenny Loggins superfans, and I thought one lady was going to faint during this song because she got so emotional.

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It was so fun. Thanks again, Rays, and thanks to my date BJ and my BFF Ali. You guys are always awesome.

Be sure to check out some more of the Rays Summer Concert Series: Martina McBride (June 8th, Rays vs. Baltimore Orioles), Imagination Movers (June 16, Rays vs. Kansas City Royals), Carly Rae Jepsen (July 14, Rays vs. Houston Astros), One Republic (August 17, Rays vs. Toronto Blue Jays), and Victoria Justice (August 18, Rays vs. Toronto Blue Jays).

Also last week, there was tons of improvements happening at our old house including professional cleaning, interior painting, new carpet, and a few odd jobs for the handyman.

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It’s now gleaming because it’s so fresh and new and clean. And it’s on the market!

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It feels so weird to see that realtor’s lock box hanging from MY doorknob. We are really hoping that it sells quickly!

Because now we have this other house…lots of unpacking going on last week.

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I pretty much have the kitchen and dining room unpacked and set up now, but there are still boxes everywhere.

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I escaped the madhouse on Friday to go on a Principal’s List fieldtrip with Mack.

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It was at a local gymnastics place, in case you couldn’t figure that out.

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Good times. Probably the last fieldtrip of the year, I guess.

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It’s hard to believe there are only a few weeks of school left!

Finally, I had a great Mother’s Day.

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I pretty much spent it ordering the boys around and unpacking because that is what I most wanted to do. I can’t wait to finally have the house set up so we can actually just LIVE in it. I’m so tired of digging through boxes and not being able to find stuff!

That’s it for now…

Cya.

Our Folly Beach Folly

February 21, 2013 at 2:54 pm

Last weekend Chad allowed me to escape reality and meet up with my sister and some high school friends for a girls’ weekend in Charleston, or rather Folly Beach which is a tiny beach town right outside of Charleston. My sister and her friends have been meeting up quasi-yearly forever and a few years ago I inserted myself into the tradition. They were all my friends too anyway. I think our last trip was to Tahoe (I wrote multiple posts about it, but here is one about Skiing Diamond Peak) two years ago. Did I forget about one since then girls?

I flew to Atlanta where I met up with my friend Jennifer, then she and I flew from there to Charlotte. My sister Janet picked up our friend Jodi, who also lives in Charlotte, then picked Jennifer and me up at the airport and we all drove to Charleston together.

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We did make one quick stop before leaving Charlotte so that I could see my parents who were helping to take care of my nephew Cody while my sister was away.

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Cody is almost three and very soon he will be a big brother. My sister is six months pregnant and we are super excited to finally be having a baby girl in the family.

We jabbered non-stop for the several hours that it took to get to Charleston, arriving right at sunset.

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Our home away from home for four days:

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We wasted no time pouring drinks and starting our four day long hometown gossip session.

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The first night we ordered pizza from a local place and just hung out talking for as long as we could keep our eyes open. We also went for a late-night walk on the beach.

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I refrained from drinking too much on Friday night because I had plans to get up early and do a ten mile run/walk on Saturday. I am actually really proud of myself for following through with those plans.

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It was a chilly morning (mid-40’s), but it felt awesome to me.

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Our little beach house was on West Ashley Drive, and I pretty much ran the whole length of West Ashley and then East Ashley, which conveniently ended right at five miles for the perfect turn-around point. I was rewarded at the turn-around point with the discovery of a lighthouse undergoing a preservation project.

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My run/walk was slow, but steady and my average pace over the ten miles was around 16 minutes/mile. I’m fine with that. My hope is to just be able to complete the Sarasota Half Marathon without being picked up by the SAG wagon. In order to do that I just need to have an average pace of no more than 18 minutes/mile, finishing in 4 hours or less.

On my run I passed many interesting beach houses, some old and dilapidated, and some new and fabulous. Many of the Folly Beach houses looked like wedding cakes to me, especially this one:

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When I got back to the house everyone was up and breakfast was made…awesome. All of the girls decided to go on another walk on the beach, but my legs were dead so I gave Janet my camera to take some photos.

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Cindy, in the pink, also led a bunch of the ladies through a lunge workout on the beach.

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Saturday morning it warmed up a little and we soaked up some sun on the deck.

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While we were sitting out there the temperatures began to drop as the weekend cold front that hit all of the eastern U.S. moved into Charleston so we moved inside. We spent a lot of time over the weekend contemplating this huge three dimensional painting that hung in the main room of the house.

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Every time you looked at this piece of “art” you saw something new.

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Eventually we all bundled up and headed out to the Piggly Wiggly for supplies.

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Do Piggly Wiggly’s still exist anywhere other than South Carolina?

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After shopping a few of the ladies got manicures and pedicures at a little salon next to the grocery store and the rest of us went shopping at the beach shops in Folly Beach.

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Once we all got home it was time to start drinking…

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and to continue cyber-stalking everyone we could think of from high school.

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Saturday evening we got all gussied up to head into Charleston for dinner.

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We went to Anson Restaurant which came highly recommended.

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Apparently double-fisting it was my MO for the evening.

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We all shared some appetizers which I didn’t photograph, but were fabulous, and I had the barbecue grouper, grits, and braised Swiss chard and it was awesome.

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Janet got some baby gifts…this was her mini-baby shower.

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Sunday meant the departure of Allison, Chrissy, and Cindy who all had to work on Monday. We had a last group brunch at the Lost Dog Café in Folly Beach.

We all shared a plate of biscuits and gravy (not photographed) and a plate of sweet potato pancakes as a brunch appetizer.

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I had a hard time choosing my entrée, but settled on the shrimp ‘n’ grits and I was very happy with my decision.

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I had contemplated getting the eggs benedict special, which came with one crab cake and one shrimp cake, but luckily Allison got that and let me try it. Also awesome.

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All of the food was amazing and although we were a little chilly sitting outside, we had a fun last meal all together.

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After we said goodbye to Chrissy, Cindy, and Allison the rest of us drove into Charleston to do some sight-seeing and shopping at the Historic Charleston City Market.

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The rest of Sunday was spent hanging out at the beach house. We had a visit from some of Jennifer’s friends who lived in Charleston and their adorable four month old twin baby girls. I refrained from being creepy and taking their photograph. In fact, I didn’t take any more photographs at all!

We did manage to take a couple of final group shots before our brunch Sunday morning…

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Sunday night we ordered take-out from a Folly Beach Mexican place called “Taco Boy” and watched The Walking Dead. We were all beat from our fun weekend and sad that it was pretty much over. Monday morning Janet drove Jennifer, Melissa, and me to the airport and then she and Jodi headed back to Charlotte. It was sad to say, “Goodbye.”

Another fabulous “bitties” trip is in the books. Thank you Chad for taking care of the boys all weekend, and for doing laundry, and for the flowers that awaited me, and for always being so awesome. Thanks for including me ladies!

Cya.